Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Futura Publications; New edition edition
Publication Date: 31/12/1981
Synopsis taken from Amazon:
In a darkened room a young man sits telling the macabre and eerie story of his life - the story of a vampire, gifted with eternal life, cursed with an exquisite craving for human blood. Anne Rice's compulsively readable novel is arguably the most celebrated work of vampire fiction since Bram Stoker's Dracula was published in 1897. As the Washington Post said on its first publication, it is a 'thrilling, strikingly original work of the imagination ...sometimes horrible, sometimes beautiful, always unforgettable'.
I first read this about 20 years ago and tore through it. I loved it! It has remained on my 'fave read' list ever since. Recently though, I have started a re-read of those early 'fave reads' and The Vampire Chronicles is the latest to come under renewed scrutiny.
When I first discovered these books, there wasn't the glut of vampire fiction abailable that there is today. From the handful on the shelf at the time, this was in my opinion the best. Since those days I've read countless supernatural/paranormal books and dozens of vampire novels and was curious if Interview with a vampire had stood the test of time and was still as good as I remembered it to be.
In short, yes, it's still a good story. I didn't rattle through it as quickly as I did the first time around but that's got more to do with reading time constraints than it has to do with content. Anne Rice's writing style is flowery and evocative and searching and those are not really things I would rate highly in my usual reading choices, but maybe nostalgia is making me sentimental and I'm prepared to put up with a lot more from an old friend than I would be from a new aquaintance.
The book was slower than I remember it being but perhaps the notion of sexy, sensual, flawed vampires was new and exciting back then and caused me to get so wrapped up in the moment that time just flew. Now, there are any number of vampires who share those qualaties and the idea doesn't seem so fresh and exciting any more. However, for all that, Rice's vampires still seem to have an 'edge' to them. Something compelling that makes them stand out from the crowd.
It's hard going into this without expectations, because I've already read the others in the series, but even knowing what is to come I loved Louis all over again in this first book and hated Lestat. I know that after a few more books I'll regard Louis as a whiny bitch and I'll adore Lestat with a passion but for now Louis is a tortured soul and Lestat is a selfish brat.
The story itself is really a setting up of what's to come. It's a vehicle to introduce us to the main characters and to world build but the core story is a solid one and although I suppose these could be read out of sequence I don't think it would be quite such an enjoyable saga that way.
I'm counting this read on a few of my challenges:-
Read all TEN (10) books in the Vampire Chronicles series (books titles below).
Books in Series Order:
5) Memnoch the Devil
6) The Vampire Armand
8) Blood and Gold
9) Blackwood Farm
10) Blood Canticle
I'm going for Reliving the Past (4-8 books) and so far the books I have in mind are:
2.On Raven's wing by Morgan Llywelyn
Any books published BEFORE 2009 . All Genres included
1. Darkfever - Karen Marie Moning - 2006
2. If Angels Burn - Lynn Viehl - 2005
3. Pleasure Unbound - Larissa Ione - 2008
4. Kiss Of Fire - Deborah Cooke - 2008
5. Magic To The Bone - Devon Monk - 2008
6. Secret Vampire - L J Smith - 2008
7. Magic Bites - Ilona Andrews - 2007
8. Poison Study - Maria V Snyder - 2007
9. Nightlife - Rob Thurman - 2006
10. Blood Price - Tanya Huff - 2004
11. Way Of The Wolf - E E Knight - 2003
12. The Smoke Thief - Shana Abe - 2006
13. Midnight's Daughter - Karen Chance - 2008